Sealed Air Corp. plans to buy its partner's interest in a polyethylene foam packaging business with plants in Drummondville, Quebec, and Dunnville, Ontario. Sealed Air wants to expand the business, called Cascades Sealed Air Corp., William Hickey, Sealed Air's senior vice president, said in a telephone interview from his firm's head office in Saddle Brook, N.J. PE foam is one of Sealed Air's core businesses but it isn't core to Cascades Inc. of Kingsey Falls, Quebec, half owner of the venture. Hickey provided no expansion details for the business and officials for each firm declined to comment on terms of the proposed purchase. Cascades an-nounced June 20 a letter of intent to sell its 5-year-old interest.
Cascades' plastics group general manager Mario Plourde said his company and the joint venture sometimes competed in the same packaging markets. Cascades' lawyer, Robert Hall, said Sealed Air is better-suited to expand the operation, which focused on Canadian markets for packaging, transportation, construction, in-sulation and recreation.
Sealed Air has been expanding through acquisition and now has 29 plants in North America and 53 worldwide, Hickey estimated. He said Sealed Air expects to complete the purchase of Australia's Protective Packaging in the next few months. Sealed Air's sales last year were $723 million.
Cascades Sealed Air used Sealed Air technology under license. Plourde estimated the venture's annual sales at C$10 million (US$7.3 million) to C$12 million (US$8.8 million).
Cascades will keep its other plastics operations, which have annual sales of about C$40 million (US$29.2 million) to C$45 million (US$32.9 million), Plourde said.
The operations include the firm's Plastiques Cascades Inc. expanded polystyrene meat tray and clamshell operation in Kingsey Falls; its Plastichange International Inc. PVC proprietary thermoformed containers business in Drummondville; Cascades Re-Plast Inc., a plastic lumber producer and recycling operation near Drummondville; and Techno Rubber, a producer of black masterbatches for plastics and rubber compounds in Sherbrooke, Quebec. Cascades' biggest business is pulp and paper.